ARMED MILITANTS have massacred roughly 100 villagers in Niger as the West African country’s presidential election results were announced
The brutal attack on two villages in the west of Niger on Saturday (January 2nd) is the latest in a series of massacres perpetrated by jihadist militants in the African country’s troubled Tilaberi region.
Almou Hassan, a local politician who administrates both communities, told AFP the villages of Tchoma Bangou and Zaroumadareye were attacked by “terrorists who came riding about 100 motorcycles.” Hassan said that many of the 75 other victims, who were wounded, have been rushed to the capital Niamey for treatment which is 120 kilometres away.
The attacks reportedly occurred as election results revealed that ruling party candidate and former minister Mohamed Bazoum, who has vowed to take severe action against jihadists, had won the first round of Niger’s presidential vote.
The two targetted villages are in the vast and unstable Tillaberi region, which is located in the “tri-border” area where Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso converge. The area has suffered jihadist assaults for years, with four thousand people across the three nations killed in 2019 according to the UN.
Last January, officials in the Tillaberi region banned the use of motorcycles in an attempt to prevent attacks by violent jihadists using the vehicles.
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